The military and nation building : a comparative study of the Nigerian and the South African military as instruments of national integration
Nkomo, Pax D. T.
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After forty years of independence. African countries are still battling with the problem of nation building. This thesis examines the possibility of the military playing a direct role in ethnic integration. The variables, which may determine the military's ability to affect national integration, are the political elite, the state and society. It is found that at lower levels of development, these variables do not support the military in the direction of national integration but they do so at higher levels of development. The issue that arises from this finding is whether African countries should wait for development to occur in the hope that it will bring national integration with it. On the other hand, lack of integration causes mistrust. tensions and conflicts, which weaken the thrust to development. African countries should therefore find methods of political organization that reduce such tensions and conflicts in order to facilitate development and consequently national integration. It is this need for stability that the culturally adaptive mode of political organization is recommended for African countries.
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